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Ex-Prime Minister Vows to Fight Bribery Case
Prime Minister Lee Wan-koo officially ended his 70-day tenure on Monday. Lee, who resigned on April 20 over a bribery scandal, will be remembered as the shortest-serving prime minister of Korea.
He had been holed up in his official residence awaiting Park's return from Latin America so she could accept his resignation.
Korea will be without a prime minister until a successor can be found.
In a brief address, Lee said he was "very sorry for causing the public to worry" over the scandal as he left his office, but protested his innocence in the face of damning evidence.
Ex-Prime Minister Lee Wan-koo (center) leaves after a farewell ceremony in Seoul on Monday. /AP-Newsis Ex-Prime Minister Lee Wan-koo (center) leaves after a farewell ceremony in Seoul on Monday. /AP-Newsis
Lee is suspected of taking W30 million (US$1=W1,074) in bribes from Sung Wan-jong, a shady tycoon and former lawmaker who committed suicide earlier this month after writing a confession that implicates several senior figures close to Park.
Lee will be summoned by prosecutors soon.
email@example.com / Apr. 28, 2015 09:45 KST
Pres. Park back from overseas trip, with a mountain of crises awaiting her
Posted on : Apr.27,2015 14:02 KST
Modified on : Apr.27,2015 14:02 KST
After completing her tour of four countries in Latin America with a visit to Brazil, President Park Geun-hye departed from Sao Paulo, Brazil, early in the morning of Apr. 26 and arrived at Seoul Air Base in Seongnam, Gyeonggi Province on the morning of Apr. 27. While the Blue House asserts that Park achieved clear results on the 12-day trip - her longest since becoming president - the political situation at home during her absence was a chaotic series of crises.
Beginning with the controversy about Park’s decision to leave the country on the first anniversary of the Sewol disaster, each day new allegations were raised in connection with the Sung Wan-jong list, and Prime Minister Lee Wan-koo announced he would resign, leading to a critical power vacuum in government. When Park returned to her desk, it was covered with a bigger pile of problems than at any time in the past. Perhaps because of these numerous problems, Park was sick throughout her trip, with swollen tonsils, a high fever, and a stomachache. Park received a health checkup on Monday and all of her appointments for the day were cancelled.
Seoul to Deploy New Guided Missiles Next Year
South Korea will station newly developed guided missiles on the western coast next year designed to attack North Korean hovercraft during a possible invasion.
The Agency for Defense Development said it took three years and W70 billion (US$1=W1,080) to develop the 70-mm guided missiles.
"The missile successfully hit its target in a fourth test recently," an official at the agency said. "After more tests until August, we plan to deploy the missiles on Baeknyeong and Yeonpyeong islands" in the West Sea.
The missiles have a range of 5-8 km and the military says they are capable of crippling the 70 North Korean hovercraft that are stationed on the west coast. Each guided-missile platform can fire 20 rounds at once.
North Korea has increased training drills using the hovercraft to transport soldiers for an invasion of the South.
Vietnamese war victims speak of sexual violence by S. Korean troops for the first time
Posted on : Apr.25,2015 13:05 KST
Modified on : Apr.25,2015 13:05 KST
Elderly Vietnamese women who were victims of sexual violence by South Korean troops during the Vietnam War who were interviewed by Yoon Mi-hyang in March and spoke about their experiences for the first time.
The old women reached into their memories. Slowly, haltingly, they began to speak. Some had been hiding it all their lives and were only talking about it now. Just as South Korea’s comfort women survivors waited until their old age before coming forward about their experiences as sexual slaves to the Japanese military - the first of them, Kim Hak-soon (1924-97), related hers on Aug. 14, 1991 - so these survivors of sexual assault during the Vietnam War were giving their first, difficult account of their experiences only now, as elderly women.
“Four people took turns doing it to me one at a time.”
“They’d put one person at a time in the trench, keep me there all day and night and just rape me again and again.”
These were the stories shared by survivors of sexual assault by South Korean troops in the province of Binh Dinh in central Vietnam.
“It was terrifying. It was so brutal. I’m still scared of you Koreans today.”
“Dai Han [Korean]? My goodness, I didn’t know. You? If I’d known you were Koreans, I wouldn’t have met with you.”
[Vietnam] [SK] [War crimes]
Did S. Korea operate “comfort stations” in the Vietnam War?
Posted on : Apr.25,2015 13:12 KST
Modified on : Apr.25,2015 13:12 KST
An article on South Korea run prostitution facilities in Saigon and other cities during the Vietnam War in the “Spring special” edition on Apr. 2 by the Shukan Bunshun weekly newsmagazine
“That Turkish bath was a ‘welfare center’ set up by the South Korean military exclusively for South Korean troops.”
Did South Korea run prostitution facilities similar to the Japanese military’s “comfort stations” in Saigon and other cities during the Vietnam War? This question is drawing new attention after a Japanese magazine report on the discovery of records suggesting so by the US National Archives and Records Administration (NARA).
At one level, the report comes across strongly as an attempt to draw attention away from Japan after South Korea’s persistent efforts to demand action from Tokyo to resolve the issue of “comfort women” forcibly mobilized as sexual slaves to the Japanese military. But the issue warrants investigation by the South Korean government - and if the allegations prove true, a serious effort should be launched to resolve the matter.
[Vietnam] [SK] [War crimes] [Comfort women] [Diversion]
Just where is S. Korea’s diplomacy headed?
Posted on : Apr.24,2015 15:44 KST
Modified on : Apr.24,2015 15:44 KST
Above, President Park Geun-hye looks at the fountain pens that she and Chilean President Michelle Bachelet will use to sign an agreement, at the signing ceremony in Santiago, Apr. 21. (Yonhap News) Below, from left to right, Chinese President Xi Jinxing, Indonesian President Joko Widodo and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at the Asian-African Summit in Jakarta, Indonesia, Apr. 22. (AFP/Yonhap News)
Chinese President Xi Jinping met with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at the Asian-African Summit in Jakarta on Apr. 22, which marked the 60th anniversary of the Bandung Conference. It was the second meeting between the two leaders after brief talks on the sidelines of the APEC in Beijing last November.
Abe is also set to hold a summit with US President Barack Obama and become the first Japanese Prime Minister to address both houses of Congresses during a visit to the US from Apr. 26.
It’s a whirlwind moment in summit diplomacy for South Korea, the US, China, and Japan - but President Park Geun-hye is nowhere to be found. Instead, Park is spending these weeks on a 12-day tour of South America. Her schedule had her departing on Apr. 16, which coincided with the anniversary of the Sewol ferry sinking that claimed over 300 lives last year, and returning on Apr. 27. While the leaders of China and Japan were shaking hands on Apr. 22, Park was meeting with overseas Koreans in Chile.
“The administration is building on the amazing results of past eras and channeling its energies into increasing national competitiveness,” Park said of the South America push.
But there are worries that she has absented herself from a turbulent diplomatic scene with direct repercussions from the Northeast Asian political environment - and that Seoul could find itself shut out by an increasingly tight-knit Beijing and Tokyo.
A Massive Embarrassment for Park
President Park Geun-hye as good as accepted Prime Minister Lee Wan-koo's resignation while she was away in Peru on Tuesday. Lee has been in office for barely two months and is the fifth prime minister to be replaced since the Park administration was launched two years ago.
Aspiring to the dubious distinction of being the country's shortest-serving prime minister, Lee resigned after being accused of taking W30 million (US$1=W1,084) in bribes from a former lawmaker and head of the perpetually troubled firm Keangnam Enterprises, Sung Wan-jong. Sung has committed suicide, but not before implicating a host of figures close to Park in his devious schemes.
More Undercover Pastors Arrested in DPRK
As a number of news agencies from Reuters to KCNA informed, on March 26 a press conference with participating representatives of local and foreign media and diplomatic corps was held in the People’s Palace of Culture in Pyongyang. At the conference, representatives of the Ministry of State Security of the DPRK informed about the arrest of two South Korean intelligence service agents, the 60-years-old Kim Guk Ki and the 56-years-old Chkhve Chkhun Gil, who had been collecting various sorts of information from Koreans living in China, from businessmen visiting North Korea and from the Chinese living abroad. The arrested persons themselves stated that they had been recruited by South Korean intelligence services in China, had been collecting information and “actively participating in the slanderous campaign organized by the American imperialists and their puppets and aimed to isolate the DPRK from the whole world”.
First appeared: http://journal-neo.org/2015/04/22/rus-ocheredny-e-pastory-shpiony-zaderzhany-v-kndr/
Seoul Hikes Defense Budget to Counter N.Korean Missiles
Seoul will spend about W8.7 trillion on a defense against North Korean ballistic missiles over the next five years (US$1=W1,080).
The figures are part of a defense plan for 2015-2019 announced Monday by the Ministry of Defense that would also hike the pay of conscripts. A corporal's pay will rise to W195,800 in 2017.
The proportion of the budget allocated to research and development will jump from 6.5 percent this year to 8.4 percent by 2020.
Out of the total budget of W232.5 trillion, W6 trillion was allocated to a so-called "kill chain" system aimed at incapacitating the North's nuclear and missile facilities in the initial stage of a conflict, up W300 billion from the last plan for 2015-2019.
The ministry also earmarked W2.7 trillion for a system designed to intercept incoming North Korean missiles.
Amid growing corruption scandal, Prime Minister Lee offers to resign
Posted on : Apr.21,2015 11:50 KST
Modified on : Apr.21,2015 11:50 KST
Prime Minister Lee Wan-koo makes a face while being continuously questioned by the political opposition about his involvement in the Sung Wan-jong list corruption scandal at the National Assembly, Apr. 15. (by Lee Jeong-woo, staff photographer)
On Apr. 20, Prime Minister Lee Wan-koo submitted his resignation to President Park Geun-hye, who is currently traveling in Central and South America, the Hankyoreh confirmed. Lee had been under pressure from both the ruling and the opposition parties to step down after his name appeared on the list left by Sung Wan-jong after his recent suicide.
On Monday evening, a high-ranking figure in the ruling Saenuri Party (NFP) told the Hankyoreh on the phone that Lee told President Park he would step down as prime minister.
“Lee was hesitating because he was concerned that it would create a power vacuum for the prime minister to resign while the president is on a trip overseas, but he determined that at the present moment stepping down was the best thing to do,” the party figure said.
The Office of the Prime Minister officially confirmed that Lee had submitted his resignation, and the Blue House subsequently reconfirmed it. President Park is planning to accept Lee’s resignation when she returns to South Korea on Apr. 27.
North Korea allows payment of normal wages for March
Posted on : Apr.21,2015 15:10 KST
Modified on : Apr.21,2015 15:10 KST
North Korean workers sew products at the Kaesong Industrial Complex. (Yonhap News)
North Korea indicated plans to allow the payment of normal wages for its workers at the Kaesong Industrial Complex, with the difference from an announced minimum wage hike to be paid later, sources said on Apr. 20.
“The North said it would allow the payment of the regular wages for now and calculate the difference from the hike later,” explained Corporate Association of Gaeseong Industrial Complex chairman Chung Ki-sup in a telephone interview with Hankyoreh on Apr. 20. That day marked the deadline for payment of March wages to North Korean workers at the complex.
North Korea recently announced a unilateral 5.18% hike in the minimum wage at the complex, which would raise monthly pay from US$70.35 to US$75.00. The South Korean government has blocked tenant companies from complying on the grounds that a unilateral increase beyond the agreed-upon 5% ceiling is unacceptable.
Violent Protests Bring Downtown Seoul to Standstill
Thousands of protesters clashed with police again in downtown Seoul on Saturday after a series of events to mark the first anniversary of the ferry disaster off the southwest coast.
Police buses are defaced by graffiti in front of Gwanghwamun, the main gate of Gyeongbok Palace in Seoul on Saturday. Police buses are defaced by graffiti in front of Gwanghwamun, the main gate of Gyeongbok Palace in Seoul on Saturday.
Police fired water cannon to disperse protesters who burned the national flag and caused massive traffic jams in the center of the capital. Around 100 protesters, including 20 family members of the disaster victims, were arrested for staging an illegal protest.
Police dispatched around 13,700 troops and formed a barricade of trucks and buses to keep the protesters from marching on Cheong Wa Dae.
Protestors climb over police trucks in downtown Seoul on Saturday, the first anniversary of the ferry disaster. Protestors climb over police trucks in downtown Seoul on Saturday, the first anniversary of the ferry disaster.
Violence intensified in the evening. At 6:30 p.m., some of the 5,000 demonstrators who had gathered in Gwanghwamun clashed with police who blocked them from taking to the streets, leaving 74 police officers and nine protesters injured.
Some demonstrators destroyed police vehicles and used fire extinguishers to spray police.
Police said Sunday that they will identify violent protesters from camera footage and charge them.
[Editorial] Excessive violence by police at Sewol anniversary events
Posted on : Apr.20,2015 11:42 KST
Modified on : Apr.20,2015 11:42 KST
Police fire a water cannon and tear gas on citizens demonstrating in front of Gwanghwamun, Apr. 18. (by Kim Bong-kyu, staff photographer)
With South Korean citizens organizing a series of events to commemorate the anniversary of the tragic sinking of the Sewol ferry, the police seemed resolved to brutally put down these peaceful demonstrations and marches. The same government that did such a poor job of rescuing passengers on the ferry is wielding a terrible power as it tramples on the grief of the victims’ families and other South Koreans and as it suppresses the justified appeals for the truth.
During a memorial event on Apr. 16, the first anniversary of the sinking, the police responded with excessive force, sealing off Gwanghwamun Square behind a barricade of buses and firing tear gas at marchers. During this process, the mother of one student who died in the sinking sustained four broken ribs.
A new Round in the Anti-corruption Drive in South Korea
The South Korean government approved ratification of a new anti-corruption law passed by parliament on March 24, 2015, already informally been dubbed the “Kim Young-ran Act” after its author, the former chairmen of the Anti-Corruption and Civil Rights Commission. This law that has been debated since the beginning of the year has provoked big arguments and its critics claim that it violates certain constitutional rights of citizens of the Republic of Korea. What has the public so worried and how is this law connected to the general political line of President Park Geun-hye?
Bribery allegations snare South Korean leader’s circle
Apr 15, 2015
SEOUL – South Korean President Park Geun-hye faced charges Wednesday that members of her administration received bribes from a businessman found dead in an apparent suicide last week.
A Seoul prosecution official said that an investigation team has been formed to look into suspicions that Prime Minister Lee Wan-koo and presidential chief of staff Lee Byung-kee among other political figures received bribes from Sung Wan-jong, whose body was found with a note that listed names of eight individuals and alleged bribery sums.
[Corruption] [Lee Myung-bak] [Park Geun-hye]
[Reporter’s notebook] The ministry’s tall tales about North Korean military spending
Posted on : Apr.15,2015 19:01 KST
Modified on : Apr.15,2015 19:01 KST
At around 3pm on Apr. 14, an official at the Ministry of National Defense showed up unexpectedly at its press room carrying a document on the scale of military spending by South and North Korea. The additional details were provided by way of explaining a statement given earlier that morning at the National Assembly by Defense Minister Han Min-koo, who had said North Korea’s yearly expenditures were “believed to be in excess of US$10 billion.”
But the ministry’s figures ended up causing controversy for using completely different standards to assess and compare the North and South‘s military spending.
“If the defense spending announced by North Korea on Apr. 9 is converted into figures, it gives an estimated US$1.15 billion, but that is believed to reflect only ordinary maintenance costs,” the document said.
“When concealed and omitted military spending are factored in, actual spending by North Korea comes out to US$10.2 billion in terms of purchasing power parity [PPP],” it added.
The report went on to estimate South Korea’s defense budget at “approximately US$32.5 billion for 2014.”
“The ratio of actual military spending between South and North is approximately three-to-one,” it concluded.
The ministry’s goal in presenting the data may have been to rebut claims that South Korea was spending 33 to 34 times what North Korea does on its military, and show the gap was not as wide as reported.
[Military expenditure] [Military balance]
Legacy of a South Korean Ferry Sinking
By Choe Sang-Hun
April 11, 2015
JEJU, South Korea — At the windy port here on South Korea’s most famous resort island, stevedores prepared a ferry for its four-and-a-half-hour journey to Mokpo in the country’s southwest, chains clanking as they lashed trucks to the damp cargo deck. As truck drivers hauling cows, radishes and aluminum window frames inched their way to the front of the line, they did something they had never done before last year: They handed in paperwork certifying the weight of their cargo.
That simple safety step — an attempt to avoid dangerous overloading — is one of a host of regulatory changes made since the sinking of the Sewol ferry, one of South Korea’s most traumatic peacetime disasters. A year ago this week, the accident claimed the lives of more than 300 passengers, most of them teenagers on a school trip to Jeju.
“In the past, we didn’t weigh trucks and we didn’t know how much ships were carrying in cargo,” said Oh Myung-o, an inspector in Jeju who is back on the job while he and four other inspectors from the island stand trial for failing to stop routine overloading. “We did not suspect the Sewol would do foul play with its ballast water. We were wrong
Draft-Dodgers to Be Named and Shamed Online
The identities and personal details of young men caught dodging the draft will be posted on the Internet from January next year.
The Military Manpower Administration on Thursday said their age, address and reasons for dodging the mandatory military service will also be revealed.
An 11-member panel of outside experts and officials will decide which identities will be revealed after giving them a chance to explain themselves.
With payday looming, wage hike issue hanging like a dark cloud over Kaesong Complex
Posted on : Apr.8,2015 17:11 KST
Modified on : Apr.8,2015 17:11 KST
Storm clouds are once again gathering over the Kaesong Industrial Complex.
April 10 marks the beginning of March wage payment for North Korean workers at the complex, for whom Pyongyang has unilaterally demanded a wage hike. On Mar. 11, North Korean authorities single-handedly amended 13 provisions in the complex’s labor regulations. Two of those provisions were applied in late February, when Pyongyang announced that the monthly minimum wage would be raised 5.18% to US$74 as of March. It also said it would be raising social insurance payments (similar to the four major types of insurance in South Korea) to 15% of basic wages plus overtime, rather than the 15% of basic wages that it was before. The result was an increase of 5.5%, or US$8.60.
Worldwide Journalists to discuss peaceful unification in Korea
By Kim Hyo-jin
More than 100 journalists from around the world will gather in Seoul next week to discuss ways to promote the peaceful unification of the Korean Peninsula, an organizer said Wednesday.
The World Journalists Conference will take place from April 12 to 18 with the theme of "peaceful unification in the year marking the 70th anniversary of the division of the Korean Peninsula."
"The need to pursue unification is higher than ever. We organized the conference, expecting it will help build empathy among worldwide journalists on the agenda," said Park Chong-ryul, president of the Journalists Association of Korea, during a press briefing.
He added that the conference will be expanded to discuss how to secure "safety in journalism" in the wake of the fatal shooting attack on the French satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo, which left 12 people dead, including journalists.
"More than 100 journalists lost their lives in the troubled regions, as well as due to unfortunate incidents this year. We need to shed light on the threat and danger journalists face," Park said.
Journalists from 62 countries will join the conference and related events
[Unification] [Propaganda] [Media]
A well-balanced approach to issues on the Korean Peninsula and Northeast Asia
Researcher at North Korean think tank outlines roadmap to 'reunification through system coexistence'
April 9th, 2015
Kim Ye Jin
This article was contributed to NK News by the DPRK’s Institute for Disarmament and Peace, Ministry of Foreign Affairs. While it has been edited for content and to conform with most aspects of NK News style, the North Korean state media custom of lower-casing the first letters in “north” and “south” Korea – reflecting the view that they are legitimately one nation – has been maintained.
Since World War II, the power architecture of Northeast Asia has been compressed on the Korean Peninsula, where both the north and the south aspire for reunification. Under these circumstances, all of the neighboring countries, having political, military and economic interests on the peninsula, are deeply concerned about the reunification formula since it is directly connected with security and peace in Northeast Asia.
[Unification] [Peace effort]
Translation App Helps N.Korean Defectors
A new translation app aims to help North Korean defectors who are often baffled by South Korean argot that has developed in quite a different direction in the 60 years of national division.
The auto-translation smartphone app was developed by Cheil Worldwide in collaboration with the Community Chest of Korea.
Young North Koreans who have recently arrived in South Korea say they find the app helpful.
Dr. Ju Sung-hyun, a defector who helped develop it, says the process helped him too learn South Korean from scratch.
[Refugee reception] [Language]
New Controversy Surrounding Kaesong Hi-Tech Industrial Park
Many a time we have analyzed the Kaesong aspect of the inter-Korean cooperation, whether that be myths that it is the principle supplier of the North Korean currency, its yet another ‘complete closure’ in connection with yet another growing animosity or relatively new information that overtime at the facility has been paid by ‘Choco-Pie’ biscuits.
Let us remind that the Kaesong Hi-Tech Industrial Park has been functioning for more than a decade, being the largest project of inter-Korean economic cooperation. Currently, 124 small and medium enterprises from the Republic of Korea (the RK) are operating at Kaesong, with the employment of 53,000 workers from the DPRK.
And here is a new problem. In 2014, Pyongyang demanded from Seoul to repair and streamline the infrastructure facilities at the Complex territory. In particular, the North demanded to repair sewage pipes through which water, going through the sewage treatment facilities on the Complex territory, is supplied to the residential sector of the city of Kaesong. But South Korea denied the request. The South indicated that the above mentioned sewage treatment facilities allow passage of 16,000 tons of water, out of which only 5,000 tons are used for the needs of the Kaesong Industrial Complex, and the rest 11,000 tons are supplied to the city. Besides, the North demanded to repair the roads used by the North-Korean workers for commuting.
After the RK rejected these demands, the DPRK unilaterally raised the employees’ minimum wages from USD 70.35 to USD 74 per month (almost by 5.2%). In addition, a new additional tax was imposed.
In response to the South Korean government’s suggestion to discuss all controversial issues under the joint management committee for the Kaesong Industrial Complex, the North denied the request. Official Seoul also immediately stated that it vigorously opposed the DPRK decision and suggested holding negotiations on this issue.
Money is not an issue here. With the average wages in the RK of about USD 2,500 per month, it is ridiculous to bargain for five dollars and increasing monthly wages from USD 70 to USD 74. Even if we take into account all charges and taxes, each North-Korean worker will cost the South Korean side USD 164 per month instead of the current USD 155, it is still peanuts.
First appeared: http://journal-neo.org/2015/04/07/rus-novy-e-spory-vokrug-ke-sonskogo-tehnoparka/
N.Korean Defectors Turn to Alternative Schools
Young North Korean defectors often have a tough time keeping up with the intense competition in schools in the South and many parents turn to alternative boarding schools.
They can also be a good choice for youngsters who came to the South on their own.
According to the Education Ministry, about 283 students attended alternative schools last year.
Chung Kyung-mi (21), who attends a prestigious private university in Seoul, said, "I was able to adjust slowly to life in the South because I got hands-on education at an alternative school. Ordinary public schools require kids to memorize textbooks, but in alternative schools you can learn things step by step and in more practical lessons."
But critics say alternative schools can slow down the adjustment process or deliver lower academic standards. One defector who gave his surname as Chun said, "Kids from elementary to high school live and study together, so it's difficult to stream classes according to ability, and the teachers weren't very good either, so academically the education was poor."
Park Ho-joon (20), who is also at a prestigious private university in Seoul, agrees. "The aim of most alternative schools is to give students the equivalent of a high school diploma, so they find it difficult to keep up at university. I've seen some students drop out of college because they don't even know how to write a term paper."
Some alternative schools are not accredited by the ministry. Another defector said, "Some unaccredited alternative schools are taught by defectors who used to be teachers in the North, and that can just lead to more problems adjusting to life in the South."
One expert said, "Some defectors who couldn't find a job set up alternative schools and are getting support from the government, but often they're just a way of making money."
Dispute over wage issue brewing at Kaesong Complex
Posted on : Apr.4,2015 13:17 KST
Modified on : Apr.4,2015 13:17 KST
North Korea reportedly ordered accounting officers at South Korean tenant companies at the Kaesong Industrial Complex to calculate March pay to reflect a recently declared wage hike.
The reports come after the South Korean government sent an Apr. 2 notice instructing business owners to only pay wages as per the existing inter-Korean agreement. There could now be a dispute between the two sides over the wage hike erupting on the ground in Kaesong.
“Our understanding is that North Korea’s Central Special Development Guidance Bureau delivered instructions to accounting officers by way of its North Korea chief worker at the different tenant companies, telling them to calculate the minimum wage and social insurance premiums by the standards set by the North,” explained a Ministry of Unification official on Apr. 3.
NIS founder recommends stripping anti-communist investigation power
Posted on : Apr.4,2015 13:23 KST
Modified on : Apr.4,2015 13:23 KST
The founder of the predecessor to today’s National Intelligence Service (NIS) called for the abolishment of its authority to conduct anti-communist investigations.
Kim Jong-pil, a former Prime Minister and founder of the Korean Central Intelligence Agency (KCIA), told the Joong-Ang Ilbo newspaper in an interview on Apr. 3 that the “reason the NIS interferes in politics is because it holds investigative authority.”
“All we need to do is assign anti-communist investigation authority to the prosecutors and let [the NIS] focus on the basic duties of an intelligence agency,” he advised.
The authority in question is the NIS’s right to investigate crimes punishable according to the National Security Law, including so-called “left-wing crimes” such as espionage. The agency’s ability to investigate without any filter on its intelligence has triggered an outcry, with charges of human rights violations and political interference.
Kim, who founded the KCIA in 1961 and served as its first director, said its initial empowerment with investigative authority was intended as a “limited-time, special situation.”
CPRK Secretariat Warns of Resolute Action against Anti-DPRK "Human Rights" Campaign
Pyongyang, March 31 (KCNA) -- The south Korean puppet regime again joined the U.S. in adopting the anti-DPRK "human rights resolution" at the 28th session of the UN Human Rights Council together with its allies, a "resolution" aimed to hurt the dignity and social system of the DPRK. Such behavior is now enraging all Koreans.
Announcing that south Korea "co-sponsored" the "resolution", the puppet regime stated that it hails the adoption of the "resolution" and "expects the UN Security Council to play a sustainable and positive role over the north's human rights issue". It went the lengths of demanding the "implementation of recommended provisions."
Besides, the regime disclosed its scheme to set up a UN "office for human rights in the north" in Seoul soon and intensify the international anti-DPRK "human rights" campaign.
In this regard the Secretariat of the Committee for the Peaceful Reunification of Korea (CPRK) issued its information bulletin No. 1088 on Mar. 30, which said:
It is the foulest anti-national crime that could be committed only by the group of heinous traitors keen on confrontation with fellow countrymen, and this is another unpardonable grave provocation and blatant challenge to the dignity and social system of the DPRK.
[Softwar] [human rights]
N. Korea criticizes South on THAAD, AIIB
By Yi Whan-woo
North Korea alleged Monday that South Korea has complied with the United States to allow deployment of an anti-ballistic missile system on the Korean peninsula in return for joining the China-led Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB).
"The U.S is putting pressure on the South over security issues involving the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) in exchange for turning a blind eye to Seoul's decision to join the AIIB," said Pyongyang's Uriminzokkiri propaganda website.
[Dilemma] [THAAD] [AIIB]
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